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Looking to evolve, Daphne's changes its name, menu

The Mediterranean fast casual food chain Daphne’s Greek Café is changing its name after nearly 20 years, in hopes of reflecting its new owners’ different approach to the restaurant.

The restaurants will now be known as Daphne’s California Greek, and will include new healthier menu options influenced by California cuisine, a contemporary restaurant design, and a focus on music, art and community, according to owner Wreath Equity LLC, which purchased the chain in August 2010.

“We are creating a lifestyle brand that is not just focused on flavorful, healthy food, but also on bringing our community together through music, art and fun,” said Bill Trefethen, chief executive officer of Daphne‘s California Greek. “We are passionate about our customer‘s well-being and we‘ve taken on the responsibility of helping our guests 'Live Life to its Fullest,' which is both our motto and driving vision behind our commitment to great tasting food and a healthy, active lifestyle.”

As part of this change, Daphne’s is undergoing a menu change, keeping current staples such as gyros, pita sandwiches, Greek salads, and kabobs, while adding dishes like the California Greek Salad, which mixes fresh ingredients including roasted chicken, avocado, cucumbers, pine nuts, carrots, corn, feta cheese, spring mix and romaine lettuces tossed with gorgonzola vinaigrette. The menu aims to use healthy ingredients like whole grains, healthy fats, grilled meats and seafood, as well as flavorful herbs and spices. Most of the items will have less than 700 calories, and include gluten-free and vegetarian options.

The chain is also hoping to retain alcohol licenses for all its restaurants so they can serve wine and beer.

The restaurants are also undergoing dramatic interior design changes in an effort to create a warm and inviting atmosphere, with décor such as sustainable bamboo tabletops, colorful chairs, new plate-ware and silverware, and a vibrant color palette of paints and fabrics. Daphne’s is attempting to reduce its carbon footprint with to-go containers made from recycled plastic bottles, paper cups made from renewable fibers and new take-out bags made from recycled materials. In addition, Daphne‘s has always offered dine-in guests silverware and plate-ware to reduce the amount of waste and packaging.

The chain also plans to use its fundraising abilities and public platform to make a difference by rolling out unique programs and campaigns that support local schools, artists, musicians, athletes and activists.

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